It’s safe to say that one of the biggest challenges of businesses—big or small— is having to wait for customers to pay their invoices. With that, you may make lots of collection calls, but to be honest, there is a much better way to handle this issue. Managing cash flow and getting access to working capital can be difficult when a business is unprepared. Invoice factoring, however, is the perfect solution to help grow a business.

In this guide, we will answer all of your questions and help you determine if factoring is the right choice for your business.

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What Is Invoice Factoring?

Invoice factoring is the process of selling some or all of your business’s outstanding invoices to a third party to improve cash flow and revenue stability. It has become a common way for many businesses, especially those companies wanting to avoid waiting days, weeks, or even months to receive payments against the invoices they generated.

What factoring gives you in exchange is a cash advance, helping you get money quicker than you normally would from other sources. This is an excellent solution for businesses across multiple industries that cannot wait for customers to pay the invoice.

What does a factoring company do?

Factoring companies provide businesses with advance payments and immediate access to the working capital needed to hit payroll, purchase more inventory, or just continue expanding operations without giving up equity. The invoice factoring company advances you up to 95% of your invoices’ cash amount, so you don’t need to wait for your customers to pay.

You can choose from any number of factoring companies, and it is a simple process to go through. All you need to do is submit your invoices to the factoring company, wait for them to verify this invoice, and receive compensation for it.

Instead of waiting 30 to 90 days for a customer to pay, the factoring company pays you in as little as 24 hours. Then, once the customer pays the invoice, you get the rest of the amount minus the factoring fee.

How Does the Invoice Factoring Process Work?

Overall, the invoice factoring process is simple and provides smooth access to your working capital. The flow of predictable cash flow you receive through factoring your accounts receivables allows you to fund future growth, expand your business opportunities, or just stay on top of expenses for a low-hassle business structure.

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Below is everything you need to know about how the process works.

Stakeholders involved in factoring

There are a few stakeholders involved in the factoring process. These include:

  • Your Business (or the seller)
  • Your Business’s Customer (or the debtor)
  • The Factoring Company

Steps in the invoice factoring process

To understand more about the process, you should know the five basic steps involved, which are as follows:

  1. Your business provides a service or sells a product to a specific customer.
  2. Your business sends the customer an invoice and also submits it to the factoring company.
  3. The factoring company provides a cash advance of up to 95% of the invoice to your business.
  4. The customer will then send the outstanding invoice payment directly to the factoring company.
  5. The remaining amount of the invoice (typically 5% to 10%) is sent to your business minus the fee paid to the factoring company.

The invoice factoring process can be a tremendous boost to your cash flow. Another advantage of considering such a process is that your factor will assume, manage, and collect your financed debts on your behalf.

Invoice factoring example

Invoice Amount $500,000
The fee paid to the factoring company (ex: 2%) $10,000
Cash Advance (ex: 95%) $450,000
Remaining Funds (after the invoice is paid) $40,000
Total Funded $490,000

Invoice Factoring Pros & Cons

Factoring comes with several advantages for your business. However, there are also some considerations to think about depending on your business. Here are the pros and cons of choosing to use invoice factoring.

Advantages of factoring

  • Improved cash flow with quick access to funds
  • Quicker and easier to qualify than traditional loan
  • Promotes a better credit score
  • Ability to fund company growth

Disadvantages of factoring

  • Hidden costs and fees from dishonest factoring companies

How Do Companies Qualify for Invoice Factoring?

Once you’re approved and your account is ready with the factoring company, you can start factoring your invoices. You simply submit your business invoices to the factor, and they advance you up to 95% of the cash total, minus the factoring fee, to your allocated bank account. The factor holds a portion of the invoice total in a reserve account. The actor then advances you the remaining amount on they collect payment from the customer.

Overall, getting started with an invoice factoring company is hassle-free and efficient. Getting approved is quick and easy, and you get instant access to your working capital. The consistent cash flow you receive through invoice factoring provides you with funding for your business’s future growth plans, expansion opportunities, or simply keeping your business structure flowing.